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Subject: Love It!!!
The fact that Bobby has no idea what he's doing is what makes these early tapes so good.. None of us knew what the fuck was going on in the beginning.
Subject: Dear JP & JB:
In the notes you say "This tape consists of two segments..."
Why then, can't it be offered to us here as two tracks? Wouldn't that better simulate the concert experience? Because even when the player on this site operates at it's best (and it doesn't always), there is still an interruption between tracks. An interruption that was not part of the show (or most reels and vinyl, etc.)
Before I get too down on you guys, let me acknowledge that you have taken a step in the right direction. Because even though you have cut up two performances into seven tracks, most of the folks who contribute to this site would have diced it into twelve!
Tony Moresi -
Subject: early Bobby guitar
It is a known rumour that Bob wasn't a very good guitarist in these days, as he was still a student of Jerry's and the youngest band member, so Bob was put low in (if not completely out of) the soundboard mix and had his amplifier playing to the room only.
When the band began to tour far from SF, you can hear all through '69 the out of tune guitars and mixed-match "noodling" plus ugly strumming/flicking the chords that Bob finally grew away from, thankfully!
If you want to hear Bobby finally come into his own then you got to hear the 2-13-70 Ungano's Pizza Parlor secret show. Bob played so much like Jerry by then that he was allowed to dominate rhythm guitar in the Fillmore shows those next few nights (which are Dick's Picks 4) and from then on.
Thank you to the hobbyists that preserved & repaired this show. You made it sound awesome!
Chris U. -
Subject: is bobby's string broken? or just his mind?
The Bob is virtually absent during parts of the Dark Star (see, e.g., Jerry's awesome jam starting around 8:30) and The Other One (like most of the first five minutes!).
Regardless, this is one of the hottest tapes ever. Jerry is one fire and the recording quality is sublime. When Bob finally shows midway through the Other One, Jerry takes it over the edge. But prior to that you get to hear what is probably the hottest recording every of Jerry, Phil and Pig setting the world on fire.
Check out the "whoo hoo!" at 6:56. Is Bob just checking the mic or trying to bring the audience back to earth? He sings the first verse (7:00 in!) like he's never sung before and fxcking kills it.
The jam which follows makes every jam in 1969 sound like an afterthought. Listen to the dark intensity at 9:30 until the final chorus ... shades of Exile on Tivoli Street and a faint whiff of Iggy's armpits.
The Cryptical outro somehow manages to do all that came before complete justice. One of the great aspects of this show is how it perfectly captures Jerry right between his more baroque '69 style and the rawer more percussive surf guitar he was playing in '67. The shows earlier in '68 (including the Avalon shows the previous month) lean more towards the edgy jangly open mind surf sound, but this show leans more toward the downshifted vibrato, velvety pixilation and deep thinking guitar that came later (all bets are off by '71, of course).
And then there is the Caution->Feedback which ends this show which is one of the most exalting ever. More cowbell? You must be crazy.